Wednesday, March 31, 2010

God Loves Trees

by Donna L. Watkins

Have you ever thought about how many times trees are mentioned in the Bible? I love trees so any time I see something about them, I notice it.

© 2009 Donna L. Watkins - Eastern Fence Lizard on Stump
The Bible begins and ends with the Tree of Life. It's mentioned in Genesis as being in the center of the Garden of Eden. In Christianity, the tree of life is symbolically seen as Jesus Christ. Revelation speaks of it as being on the side of the river with 12 kinds of fruit and leaves for the healing of the nations.

Trees are a beautiful part of God's Creation. Genesis 2:9 tells us that "The Lord God made all kinds of trees grow from the soil, every tree that was pleasing to look at and good for food."

 Trees are also our source of oxygen. If we didn't have trees, we'd have no oxygen and that would mean no life for humans. The Tree of Life is aptly named since for every breath of life we must be grateful to trees. Talmudic writings about the Tree of Life say that it's so big that it would take 500 years to climb it.

Many of the Bible stories were witnessed by trees. Abraham met angels and the Lord while sitting in the shade of oak trees (Gen. 18:1). The prophetess, Deborah, held court under a palm tree (Judges 4:5). David sought safety in the forest of Hereth (I Sam. 22:5). Elijah took refuge under a broom tree when he experienced 'burnout' (I Kings 19:4).

As a blessing, God gave Solomon the knowledge of all Creation. I Kings 4:33 says, "He would speak of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon to the hyssop that grows in the wall; he would speak of animals, and birds, and reptiles, and fish." The man that God gave great wisdom to, took time to speak of nature. I wonder if God revealed wisdom as Solomon spent time in the forest. Don't you feel like something is being downloaded into your soul when you walk through a forest? You know the presence of God is there and all confusion, frustration and the many details of life just fade away the deeper you go into the woods.

In Judges 9 trees speak for themselves with a debate on who should be king. Zechariah 11 says, "Wail, O cypress, for the cedar has fallen, for the glorious trees are ruined! Wail, oaks of Bashan, for the thick forest has been felled!"

Do trees cry? I've cried when trees were cut down. They are so symbolic of God in my life. I don't worship trees, but I worship the God that made them and shows Himself to me through them and all of His Creation. It was all made for us. What diversity! Enough to delight us every day and hour of our lives.

Consider these words by Hermann Hesse:

“For me, trees have always been the most penetrating preachers. Nothing is holier, nothing is more exemplary than a beautiful, strong tree.

When a tree is cut down and reveals its naked death-wound to the sun, one can read its whole history in the luminous, inscribed disk of its trunk: in the rings of its years, its scars, all the struggle, all the suffering, all the sickness, all the happiness and prosperity stand truly written, the narrow years and the luxurious years, the attacks withstood, the storms endured.

Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach, undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.

A tree says: 'A kernel is hidden in me, a spark, a thought, I am life from eternal life. I was made to form and reveal the Eternal in my smallest special detail.'

So the tree rustles in the evening, when we stand uneasy before our own childish thoughts: Trees have long thoughts, long-breathing and restful, just as they have longer lives than ours. They are wiser than we are, as long as we do not listen to them.

But when we have learned how to listen to trees, then the brevity and the quickness and the childlike hastiness of our thoughts achieve an incomparable joy. Whoever has learned how to listen to trees no longer wants to be a tree. He wants to be nothing except what he is. That is home. That is happiness.”

There is much peace in a forest or under the branches of any large tree. Lie back, look up and see the immenseness of life outside yourself. Isaiah 61:3 tells us that we "will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, to display his glory." Even God compares His glory to a tree. In the presence of a forest, or even a large oak tree spreading its arms around me and it's crown toward Heaven, I am drawn to worship and dance and celebrate the love of God. Thank you, Abba Father, for the trees.

This website is sponsored by The Herbs Place, distributor of Nature's Sunshine herbs, supplements, essential oils and more at wholesale prices.

The photo(s) and article are copyrighted. You may use either of them if you include the following credit and active link back to this website:
© 2010 Donna L. Watkins - This article was reprinted with permission from The link to use is:

No comments:

Share This Post